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USDA Market News Tue Mar 18, 2003

New Zealand Meat Export Summary and Prices

Beef: Anxious U.S. consumers in uncertain times not reducing level of frozen beef stocks and this was main reason for prices easing 1-2c/lb last week. In contrast, prices in Asian markets for cuts and some manufacturing items continue to rise. Helped by a 3% weaker NZ dollar, Agri-Fax indicator prices up 15c/kg for steers and 8c/kg for bulls.

Lamb: European markets have become softer in price as we move toward Easter production period and supply of sheepmeat reaches its peak in NZ. Sharply lower Kiwi$ was main factor affecting market returns last week which overall up by nearly 10c/kg on farmgate basis.

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